Remember when the Buffalo Bills qualified for the playoffs two years ago? At this point, that looks like more of an outlier season than anything else. An underwhelming 10-3 loss in the Wild Card round to the Jaguars remains Buffalo’s lone playoff appearance of this millennium, and they took a significant step back last season, finishing just 6-10.
The Bills are set to enter year 3 under head coach Sean McDermott. With the Patriots as near locks to win yet another AFC East crown in 2019, the other three teams in the division will be battling it out for second place. The Buffalo Bills look like the third-best team in the division on paper, but football games obviously aren’t won on paper.
Josh Allen will be entering his second season with the team after being installed as the starter just a few weeks into his rookie campaign. He showed flashes of upside during his first year as a pro, but he still finished the year with two more interceptions (12) than passing touchdowns (10). Allen showed that he can use his athleticism to his advantage, but the Buffalo Bills are going to need the second-year signal-caller to show improved accuracy and decision-making.
Of the Bills’ six wins a season ago, just two came against the other three teams in the division. They thumped the Jets by 31 points in Week 10 and crushed the Dolphins by 25 points in the final game of the year. Buffalo is going to have to improve its intra-divisional record if they have legitimate aspirations of improving next season. The Buffalo Bills’ other four wins last year came against teams (Minnesota, Tennessee, Jacksonville, Detroit) that finished with a combined record of 28-35, and none of their wins came against playoff teams.
Bills 2019 Offseason Moves
The Buffalo Bills thought they had made a big splash by trading for disgruntled Steelers receiver Antonio Brown, but the deal was not to be. While missing out on talent like that obviously stings, the Bills still got Josh Allen some much-needed help. Buffalo signed a whopping five offensive linemen in free agency in an attempt to improve what was one of the weakest OLs in football a season ago. They drafted another lineman with the sixth pick of the second round, Cody Ford.
Potentially improved protection should help Allen improve on his accuracy, which was just over 52% last season. Buffalo also signed a pair of pass-catchers in John Brown and Cole Beasley as free agents. If the Buffalo Bills’ intention this offseason was to help Allen, they’ve done so. Tight end Charles Clay left in the offseason, but his best days are in the rearview mirror anyway.
The Bills’ biggest addition on the defensive side of the football will be Ed Oliver, who was plucked with the ninth pick in the draft out of the University of Houston. Oliver was one of the many players that had been billed as a potential No. 1 overall pick, so getting him at No. 9 is a major coup for a defense that was already solid last season. The rest of the Buffalo Bills’ defense remains largely unchanged, while Kevin Johnson and E.J. Gaines were signed to try and add depth on the corners. Kyle Williams retired, but Oliver should step in and fill that void instantly.
Jets 2018 Statistics
Points per Game
Passing Yards per Game
Rushing Yards per Game
Points Allowed per Game
Passing Yards Allowed per Game
Rushing Yards Allowed per Game
Buffalo Bills 2019 Schedule
Sun, Sep. 8
at New York Jets
Sun, Sep. 15
at New York Giants
Sun, Sep. 22
vs. Cincinnati Bengals
Sun, Sep. 29
vs. New England Patriots
Sun, Oct. 6
at Tennessee Titans
Sun, Oct. 20
vs. Miami Dolphins
Sun, Oct. 27
vs. Philadelphia Eagles
Sun, Nov. 3
vs. Washington Redskins
Sun, Nov. 10
at Cleveland Browns
Sun, Nov. 17
at Miami Dolphins
Sun, Nov. 24
vs. Denver Broncos
Thu, Nov. 28
at Dallas Cowboys
Sun, Dec. 8
vs. Baltimore Ravens
Sun, Dec. 15
at Pittsburgh Steelers
Sun, Dec. 22
at New England Patriots
Sun, Dec. 29
vs. New York Jets
The Buffalo Bills kick 2019 off with back-to-back games at MetLife Stadium against the Jets and Giants. They’ll then come home for two straight against the Bengals and Patriots before facing the Titans on the road. Buffalo gets a fairly early bye in Week 6, and afterward, they’ll enjoy a six-game stretch in which they’ll face just one team that made the playoffs a season ago (Philadelphia).
The Bills’ toughest stretch of schedule will come between Weeks 13 and 16 when they’ll face the Cowboys, Ravens, Steelers, and Pats before wrapping things up with a divisional tilt at home against the Jets. So, if the Buffalo Bills are going to make some noise this season, they’re likely going to have to do most of their damage before Week 13.
As is the case with every AFC East team this year, the Bills will get to enjoy most of their schedule within the Eastern Time Zone. During the ‘19 campaign, the Bills will have two games outside of their own time zone: Week 5’s game in Nashville against the Titans and the Thanksgiving Day contest against the Cowboys.
Bills 2019 Outlook
As is the case with just about every team with a young quarterback, the Buffalo Bills are hoping Josh Allen makes noteworthy steps forward in his second season. Having an improved line should help, and Allen’s elusiveness should help him avoid being sacked too often. The real question is whether he’ll be able to improve his accuracy, which was the No. 1 question mark for him as a largely unknown product coming out of Wyoming.
In all likelihood, the Bills will go as far as their defense can take them. Buffalo led the league in passing yards allowed per game last season, and the additions of Johnson and Gaines should only help fortify what was a quietly stingy unit. If Oliver can live up to his billing, Buffalo may have a legitimate monster on its hands. While the defense performed well, the Buffalo Bills still ranked near the bottom of the league in the sack department. Buffalo was 26th in sacks with 36 on the season, and they’re going to need to put more pressure on opposing quarterbacks if they have aspirations of improving on last year’s six-win season.
There is plenty of talent in place, and any optimism surrounding this team makes sense. Sneaking into the playoffs as they did a couple of years ago may be a stretch, but Buffalo and the Jets should be able to duke it out for second place in this division behind New England. The defense will keep them competitive in games, and it will be up to Allen to improve his marksmanship if the team has realistic aspirations of doing any actual contending this year.
Buffalo Bills 2019 Win Total Odds and Pick
Buffalo won six games last season, and they appear to have improved this offseason. Vegas doesn’t think they’re in store for a massive jump, but they do have a higher over/under than they did a year ago at this time.
Total Regular Season Wins
Over 7 (-140)
Under 7 (+110)
The odds say that oddsmakers like the Bills’ chances of topping 7 wins more than they do their chances of failing to meet expectations. With early-season games with the Jets, Giants, and Bengals, it’s not unfathomable to think the Bills could start the season 3-0 or 2-1. Frankly, anything less than a 2-1 start would likely be disastrous for their chances of hitting the over.
Buffalo is also going to have to take care of business against a Dolphins team that many believe will be the league’s worst in 2019. Having two games against Miami won’t hurt, and there are legitimately nine winnable games on Buffalo’s schedule in the first 11. They’ll surely be betting underdogs in their early-season games against New England (Week 4) and Philadelphia (Week 8), but it is worth noting that both of those games will be in Buffalo.
I’m not overly optimistic about Allen’s chances of becoming a star, but I do think this defense is good enough to carry the Bills to a few more wins than they otherwise may have earned this season. Tre’Davious White is quickly turning into a legitimate star at corner, while Oliver will prove to be a nice replacement for Williams in the middle of that D-line.
Give me the over on 7 wins for the Buffalo Bills in 2019.
The AFC East still isn’t the greatest division, but there are two teams outside of New England that seem to be on the rise. The Buffalo Bills are one of those teams.
Taylor Smith has been a staff writer with GamblingSites.org since early 2017. Taylor is primarily a sports writer, though he will occasionally dabble in other things like politics and entertainment betting. His primary specialties are writing about the NBA, Major League Baseball, NFL and domestic and international soccer. Fringe sports like golf and horse racing aren’t exactly his cup of tea, bu ...
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